Luke, the Evangelist, is also known as a physician. It is with care and curiosity that he records the events of the Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles; it is for the healing of the spirit, soul, and body that he shares the good news of Jesus Christ with his patients, those hungry for salvation.
As we remember Luke this year, we may consider all of the healthcare workers, physicians, nurses, assistants, and orderlies who are stretched and stressed even more than many of the rest of us by this extended pandemic and its toll. We may wonder, with our guide, whence relief is to come.
Luke believes deeply in the power of Jesus’ name to heal and to restore the people. He also believes in the strength of community to amplify and to extend that power, that name. It is Luke who describes the cacophony of Pentecost, the communal care of the first churches, the intertwining visions and prayers and partnerships of those willing to spread the Gospel.
We are a community, not only within the church but around the world. There is nothing like a global pandemic to demonstrate how dependent we are on one another for our health, for our comfort, for our peace of mind and body.
Luke, physician and evangelist, knew the importance of the health of body and spirit alike, and the ways in which scientific wisdom, the understanding of the workings of creation, of creatures, of ourselves, reveals its Creator’s glory.
What would St Luke say about getting a booster for the COVID19 vaccine as available? Perhaps it is not too much of a stretch to imagine that he, in sympathy and solidarity with his physician colleagues and support staff would welcome it. Perhaps it is not too forward to imagine that he would promote every measure to keep his community safe and well and together, to relieve the burdens of those who care for the health of others, and to increase the common good.
Collect for St Luke (BCP, 244)
Almighty God, who inspired your servant Luke the physician to set forth in the Gospel the love and healing power of your Son: Graciously continue in your Church this love and power to heal, to the praise and glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.